The Mysterious Affair at Styles
by Agatha Christie
After a wealthy woman is murdered in her home, the detective Hercule Poirot arrives to solve the case.
As Christie’s first published novel and the beginning of a long line of Hercule Poirot novels, this book sets up the main character’s abilities, as well as his dynamic in solving mysteries with the rather limited assistance of Arthur Hastings. I personally like that Hastings is involved and trying his best, although usually missing the real trail among the many intricately woven paths of misdirection, since I’m usually not as hot on the trail as Poirot.
I enjoyed the novel, and the murder mystery, and Christie’s abilities as an author are obvious. It’s well written and complicated, but not in a way that feels dissatisfying when Poirot expertly lays out how he managed to see through all the red herrings and expertly lays out how and why the crime was committed.